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Forgery and fraud: now it's NAB's turn

Andrew Hagger, chief customer officer of the National Australia Bank. Photo: AAP Andrew Hagger, chief customer officer of the National Australia Bank. Photo: AAP

Forgery, fraud, false witnessing are among some of the breaches within National Australia Bank's planning arms, as the royal commission turned its gaze to inappropriate conduct within the bank.

The bank has been rocked with scandals within its planning arms in recent years including that its planners misappropriated funds from clients and forged customer signatures.

NAB consumer and wealth division chief customer officer Andrew Hagger spent about 20 minutes giving evidence on Monday.

Senior counsel assisting the royal commission Rowena Orr, QC, is expected to conduct a full probe of misconduct by NAB's planners on Tuesday.

On Monday, the royal commission heard of one instance of false witnessing by a NAB financial planner, Bradley Meyn, who joined the bank in December 2014.

The royal commission heard that in September 2016, Mr Meyn helped a married couple who were his clients reduce their insurance cover to $200,000 so they could extend their retirement savings.

Such a change to an insurance policy requires a signature from the client and two witnesses who are not the client or a beneficiary of the policy.

However, Mr Meyn did not arrange for the policy to be witnessed. Instead he convinced a customer service officer at NAB to sign as a witness despite that officer not witnessing the signatures.

Asked why Mr Mr Meyn's arranging false witnesses was wrong, Mr Hagger said: "It creates the potential for the beneficiary nomination form to be invalid and for the trustee to then make a determination in the event of death and there is the possibility that the trustee will make deicisons that were different to the wishes of the client."

This article was first published by
Author: Sarah Danckert is a business courts reporter based in Melbourne.
Last modified onMonday, 23 April 2018 21:08

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